24 July 2016 Vegetable Juice

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Twelve garden vegetables were made into 18 pressure canned liters of vegetable juice. The vegetables were green beans,carrots,onioons,turnips,beets,basil,celery,parsips,peppers,kale,collards,cucumbers. Pictures depict the process.

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23 July 2016 Garlic Bulb

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One garlic bulb was harvested to ascertain if it meets my criteria for harvesting the bed. Criteria is the bulb sheath should be open such that most of the cloves are visible. This is contrary to convention where the bulbs are pulled when the tops die down about one third and the sheath is closed. The theory being that the bulbs store better. I have found the bulbs are substantially larger if allowed to split the sheath and storage time is essentially same with a closed or open sheath. The bulb weighed 151 grams and each clove was 39,31,37,25,32, and 43 grams. The was the undried or not cured weight. Quality hard neck garlic does not vary much in size. My bed will remain as is for about another two weeks before commencing harvest.

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23 July 2016 First year Rounds (Garlic)

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My row (25 plants) of the end of growth of first year rounds of garlic were harvested. Each bulb has about five cloves.I have found that the size of the clove for planting has no direct bearing on the size of the bulb produced. The bulbs are robust but small. The cloves will be planted in October for making the crop of garlic for 2016/2017. The bulbs all produced scapes seed tentacles which will be matured in water and stored and a few will be planted to affirm viability. The main bulbs were placed in the shed to thoroughly cure which means drying about ten days.

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20 July 2016 Hot Peppers

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My four hot pepper plants are starting to produce. I dry the pods in the greenhouse and when dry beat as small as possible in the blender. They are stored in a jar in the cupboard. I just used up some from three years ago and they were still as hot as when processed. I get about a liter from the four plants.They are very hot.

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18 July 2016 Blueberry Juice

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Twenty six pounds of blueberries were picked at Steward Berry Farm in Cathcart, ON and made into 24 liters of pressure canned juice. Cost was $2.30 per pound. The fruit is just coming on the market in this part of Ontario. Process was to wash, add water to cover the berries, two batches were required, cook until soft, blend into slurry, stain through a food mill of 2 mm mesh. Place in liter jars and pressure can at 15 PSI for 15 minutes for storage at room temperature. There is almost no residue from blueberries and the straining part could be eliminated. I can about 80 liters each year, and blueberry juice is a favourite. More will be processed this week.

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Sixteen more pounds of blueberry were picked and made into 14 liters of Pressure canned juice. Pictures delineate the procedure.

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Twenty one pounds of blueberries were picked today and made into 17 liters of pressure canned juice. The cost per pound was $2.90 at Kent Kreek farm in Simcoe, ON. The berries were large and plentiful. Pictures depict the process.

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18 July 2016 Kitchen Knife

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Recently in a discount store a single knife was displayed in a bargain box. Price was eighty cents. It was purchased, since the cutting blade structure was unknown to the purchaser and the price was minimal. Upon testing it at home it was found the knife cut a fresh tomato perfectly. It appears to be welcome addition in the kitchen. The only marking on the knife is: TODAY’S KITCHEN STAINLESS STEEL. It could not be found on the Internet after a perfunctory search.

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17 July 2016 Garden Pictures

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Took garden pictures for posterity. My garden is excellent considering there was no rain of significance since the beginning of May. I water plants roots on my designated day due to city water restrictions. Grass is ignored. There are few bugs except for the Colorado Potato Beetle, severe infestation, and the Japanese Beetle appeared about a week ago. I pick them off the potato plants. The quantity of produce from my beds is astonishing. Pressure canning a slurry is my main preserving method, which translates into a palatable drinkable juice. Durgan’s Method if you like, since I am the only person doing it.

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15 July 2016 Outdoor Burner

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Purchased an outside burner for preparing my produce for canning. It is around 50,000 BTU and fueled by propane. There is one control near the hand tank connection for regulating heat. It also has a wind guard. My old burner was deteriorating after about ten years of use. Cost was around $100.00 Canadian.

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15 July 2016 Vegetable Juice

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Some garden vegetables were made into seven liters of juice. The ingredients were carrots, parsnips, cucumbers, and beets. Procedure was to wash, cut into small pieces, cover with water, cook until soft, hand bend into a slurry, strain through a 2 mm food mill mesh, place in liter jars. Pressure can at 15 PSI for 15 minutes for long term storage. Usually the residue from the food mill is put through a Champion Juicer but the amount was so small that this step was eliminated.

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14 July 2016 Garlic

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The garlic was serviced to produce Bulbils, and Rounds for planting in October 2016. The row of bulbils planted in 2015 produced 40 rounds, which will planted to produce first year garlic which is always slightly smaller than the product from a mature clove, and usually fewer cloves.

The bulbil row has died off and finding the small rounds takes a bit of sifting soil. One bulb produced from a round was pulled and photographed. The cloves of this bulb will be planted in October 2016 and will produce a normal sized bulb, a clone of the original. Needing seed, a few of the seed or bulbil pods were wrapped in gauze until maturity to prevent seed dispersal as they dry.

To clarify: A clove is planted in October, Zone 5, and this produces a normal sized clone of the original bulb. It is usually harvested in July of the following year. This is the usual method of growing garlic.

My garlic also produces scapes, most hard neck garlic does, which are the long finger which produces the seed pod at the end. Scapes are often cut and utilized, but if left on and allowed to mature the pod at the end produces a pod with many seeds called bulbils. The bulbils can be planted and will produce a single small bulb called a round. The round planted the succeeding year will produce a slightly smaller bulb than the original. The cloves of this bulb when planted will produce a normal sized bulb exactly a clone of the original

No new garlic is ever produced. The plants are asexual.

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